Cebu City on a Holy Week

NOTHING beats a spontaneous yes to an adventure of a lifetime.

This is what took place when I visited Cebu City last Holy Week. I was actually not ready for it. I was a last minute replacement of an arranged paid tour. When a good friend of mine namely, Fritzy Ruth Gahuman, told me she will buy the boat tickets for me. I said yes, without batting an eyelash.

On the eve of April 16, new-friend Jen and I traveled from Davao to Surigao City. We joined the crowd of people who are trying to go home and spend Holy Week with their families. Given the flood of passengers, the trip was out of ordinary.

We arrived safely in Magpayang, Surigao Del Norte on the 17th of April and as the day ended, we were on board Cokaliong ship from Surigao City to Cebu. It was actually the biggest ship I had ever been on.

Hours later, we feasted our eyes and took as much photos as we can at Sirao Garden, Temple of Leah, Taoist Temple, Magellan’s Cross, Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño among others.

It was very momentous being there at the Basilica on a Maundy Thursday.

Around 3 p.m. saw people prepare for the Washing of the Feet of the Apostles. I could really feel the deep sense of religiosity of the people in the area. I was also finally able to see for myself Magellan’s Cross, and stood in awe there knowing that two years from now would be the 500th year since Magellan arrived in the Philippines. In this era of #walangforever, I am glad to see something that stood the test of time.

The next day, since it was Good Friday, majority of the tourist spots are close but since it is a holy day for the Catholics like me, our destination was fitting, and that is Simala Shrine located in Sibonga, Cebu. There I asked for blessings in school and in work, for my friends and loved ones, and for progress.

On our last day, we woke up early as 3 a.m. to make it early to Oslob and see the whale sharks. I cannot believe that I get to see those big friendly fish at a very close distance. Seeing the whale shark and swimming in the same water as them, made me realize that there is still hope for humankind to co-exist in harmony with the creatures of the sea. I am grateful for the clean waters that invited them in, hoping that there is possibility to see these sharks regularly in Davao Gulf maybe. That was just wishful thinking.

To wrap, I was really glad I am on that trip, and I am glad I am able to really experience the majesty of Cebu City and answer why it is the Queen City of the South. I am grateful for my friends Fritzy Ruth Gahuman, Jen Casanova for inviting me. Thanks also to Byaherong Cebu for a very smooth tour. My words may not give justice to the beauty of Cebu, you must see it for yourself.


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